American Industry Overview: Chocolate and Cocoa Products
Included in this industry classification are establishments primarily engaged in shelling, roasting, and grinding cocoa beans for the purpose of making chocolate liquor from which cocoa powder and cocoa butter are derived and in the further manufacture of solid chocolate bars, chocolate coatings, and other chocolate and cocoa products. Also included is the manufacture of similar products, except candy, from purchased chocolate or cocoa.
The chocolate and cocoa products industry has traditionally been subject to significant fluctuations in demand. Chocolate products tend to be seasonal in nature, with demand increasing sharply during the holidays. Typically, the third and fourth quarters reflect the highest sales. In addition, several consumer trends have had an impact on demand. These include rising sales of premium-priced chocolates and the growing interest in medical research news concerning either health risks associated with high-fat milk chocolates or, ironically, health benefits associated with dark chocolate and premium cocoa that contain antioxidant flavanols.